Google OnHub teardown reveals low repairability

Google's OnHub router has been given the teardown treatment, and the conclusion is that if you must repair something in the device, you'll probably find yourself having to replace it, instead. Google's new router received an overall "repairability" score of only 4 out of 10, which is pretty low, but not the worst result we've seen. The one readily DIY-able component is the speaker, which can be swapped out if it goes bad by someone with basic tinkering skills.

The router was introduced in recent weeks, and getting it apart doesn't appear to be too difficult. The outer cowling twists off without effort, but from there it took a bit of hunting to get all the way in — turns out the top merely needs to be popped off. The antenna is the first component visible at this point; next after is an ambient light sensor and a National Semiconductor LP5523 LED driver.

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Screws come into view at this point, cables for the antennas, and the antenna array. That latter array can be removed from the motherboard; nearby is the 3-watt speaker.

Other components include a heatsink, a Qualcomm Atheros IPQ8064 processor, Micro MT41K256M16Ha DDR3L SDRAM, a trio of other Qualcomm Atheros chips, a Silicon Labs EM3581 SOC, a Skyworks 66109 2.4GHz ZigBee/Smart Energy front-end module, and more than half a dozen other chips.

The use of clips rather than adhesive was moderately encouraging, at least as far as DIY goes, but small antenna connectors, ports being on a single board, and overall complexity means repairs won't be easy.

SOURCE: iFixit